“Laziness, like money, doesn’t really exist except to represent something else–in this case fear, severe self-judgment, or what Natalie Goldberg calls ‘the cycle of guilt, avoidance, and pressure.'”
–Janet Burroway, Writing Fiction: A Guide to Narrative Craft
NaNoWriMo is in full swing, and although I’m certainly not writing 2000 words a day, I’m writing in most of the free time I don’t give my thesis. This isn’t aided by the fact that I’m on drixoral for the next few days, and that shit is fucking me up royally. I was afraid of a relapse of the nasty bug that floored WO and me this summer until I read on the Internet that dizziness and drowsiness are normal side effects of drixoral. Ugh. (Nice of the doc to not mention it, I’ll add.)
Add to that a continuation of some personal life stressors, and I’m just begging to get out of the house for at least a nice long walk with uninterrupted music (hoping I don’t get too light-headed along the way). I’m about at the point I reach about this time every term, where I want to throw my laptop into a dumpster. That’s where all the work and all the requests for work are, after all.
Okay, maybe not a dumpster. But I wouldn’t have a problem losing it in the shit pile that is my apartment for the next couple of weeks.
My NaNoWriMo story is shaping up decently nicely, although I think my lack of writing practice shows clearly. The opening is awkward and stilted, and if I take a break for more than about 12 hours, I’m awkward when I start again. That said, I still feel good doing it, even if I don’t think I’ll be tossing it out here for public consumption.
I tend to be one that wants some schedule, some regularity, to my workouts. I like having a “training schedule” for running, even if I’m not planning to race. I like knowing when my twice-weekly weight lifting sessions will be. Same with biking, yoga, and martial arts.
But what happens when I don’t feel like doing one or any of them? I’ve been kind of dragging myself to the gym for weight lifting out of necessity these past couple of weeks. My body needs the strength, my shins especially, but I find it hard to focus and do the reps correctly, and I feel the workout’s wasted if I just throw weights around. I know it’s not a complete waste, but still.
I had a pretty nasty asthma attack last night, and I woke up (for about the fifth time) this morning about an hour before the run I was supposed to do. It took me that whole hour to psych myself into going out and running, knowing that I’d lost my inhaler, and knowing that I was at high risk for an attack, especially since I was still wheezing while lying in bed the next morning.
Maybe it’s just the start of my usual winter doldrums. Getting myself out of bed before class to exert myself seems arduous, especially given how interrupted my sleep’s been. Just two months ago, I was so happy to have classes starting at 10:00 so that I would have time to knock out a full hour of exercise before tackling the day.
So we’ve been working on Exploit: Zero Day for a couple of years now, but I haven’t talked nearly enough about it here. It’s a web-based cyberthriller puzzle game where you play as a hacktivist, uncovering and battling against oppression and exploitation.
*innocent whistle* Totally not the sort of game I’d want to make or play, no…
It’s been in closed alpha for a while, but we’re ready to offer a prelude season of paid story: “Headless Swarm”. For details on the plotline and how it relates to the continued free alpha access, check out the announcement blog post over at FPG.
I visited uptown Charlotte tonight, amidst the current protests and unrest after Keith Scott’s death. My friend and I had a few tidbits of info on where people were meeting, but nothing concrete, so we wandered along several streets.
In areas where people weren’t protesting, businesses were closed, and the streets were unusually silent for 20:30 on a Friday night. Troops stood in clumps of three on corners, waving or saying hello when you passed them. The occasional humvee or police SUV drove by.
Things were more lively at the Omni Hotel, where folks had covered the sidewalk in chalk. There were lots of media there: it was clearly an “allowed”, acceptable, media-consumable gathering. I’d maybe characterize it as a space for quieter expression of grief, although it was criticized by another gathering as essentially being for the white people. The writings were names of people killed and sayings that many of us are familiar with: “hands up don’t shoot”, “when will we have justice?”, etc. Religious figures were around, praying with people.
Further down Trade St., past the bus station, a group had gathered in front of some government building. My friend and I stayed there for a while. They were chanting “I am my brother’s’ keeper!” and folks were stepping up to share their perspectives. Four National Guards and a cop stood between the crowd and the building (with the aid of crowd control barriers), utterly stoic when the crowd shouted questions at them.
Folks probably know that I make video games as part of Future Proof Games, but maybe not what we’re doing at the moment. Many, many (many) years ago, Gregory made “(I Fell in Love With) The Majesty of Colors”, a very sweet Flash game about balloons and drowning.
As the site stats geek for FPG, I can tell you “Majesty” remains pretty damned popular. (Hell, it just got linked by Buzzfeed a few days ago.) It’s an evocative game that continues to appeal to folks wanting to explore the soft feelings of a big, weird, sessile alien. Problem is, Flash is finally actually dying — no phone/tablet can run it, and some browser configurations require user action before it’ll run Flash.
So we’re bringing “Majesty” to modern devices: Android, iOS, and Windows/OSX/Linux. And holy crap, this game feels great on a phone; moving the tentacle with your finger just feels real in a way that the tiny, mouse-controlled Flash version doesn’t. I’m excited to test it on tablets.
One of the first pictures taken of my newly-dyed locs.
I did it! I’ve had locs twice now, for a total of almost five years, and each time I’ve gone, “I should be bold and dye my hair!”
But it’s very permanent, especially since my natural hair color likely needs to be lightened for color to show much. Plus, lightening hair can be damaging. Last thing I want is to have my locs falling out. I’ve literally spent years growing these things; I’m not ashamed to say I’m a little attached to them, even if I don’t name them or count them.
But finally, with the aid of recommendations from friends and family on a beautician, I got my hair did.
Ossuary—Future Proof’s first commercial game release—is part of the Steam Summer Sale and will be 25% off until July 4. If you haven’t had a chance to play yet, it’s only $7.50 (USD). If you’re on the fence, the demo, “The Hodge-Podge Transformer,” is also on Steam.
It’s been on Steam for a year and a month now, and it’s been a fascinating experience. After watching a few Let’s Plays of Ossuary and “Hodge-Podge,” we released an update in December to improve the tutorial experience and solve some colorblindness issues.
Our current work in progress is Exploit: Zero Day, a cyberthriller where you roleplay a hacktivist by making and solving puzzles. It’s pretty cool, and our alpha players are making really friggin’ awesome puzzles and stories. If you want in, hop on the monthly mailing list and you’ll get a key in the next newsletter.
After coffee with a yogi friend, I was inspired to start climbing back on the yoga horse. Most yoga studios in my area only have Saturday morning classes, so I had very few options for something in the afternoon.
Whatever. I was feeling brave. I signed up for an all-levels Vinyasa hot class at a studio I’d never been to. Ninety minutes.